Jeremiah wonders why the wicked prosper. The Lord tells Jeremiah not to grow weary bc He has a plan and Jeremiah is part of His plan but it will be a long, hard road.
God says that He will punish all of Israel’s evil neighbors but they too will have a chance to be redeemed. “And it shall be, if they will learn carefully the ways of My people, to swear by My name…then they shall be established in the midst of My people.”
The Lord has Jeremiah perform symbolic acts to nail home His message:
– God has him purchase a sash and wear it. Then He tells him to go to the Euphrates and bury it. After some time He has him return and dig it up; thus illustrating how the Lord was going to destroy the pride of the people who at one time clung to Him, as the sash did Jeremiah’s waist, but left Him for pagan worship.
– Jeremiah instructs the people to fill their jugs with wine. For as wine leads to drunkenness, the sins of the people will lead to their destruction.
In an attempt to lead the people to repentance, the Lord sends a drought. He tells Jeremiah not to intercede for them bc they will experience judgement for their sins. The false prophets, who keep telling the people that all is fine when it is not fine, will also experience God’s wrath for they do not speak the word of the Lord but lies.
Jeremiah asks if the Lord has totally rejected Judah and he prays for healing. The Lord says at this point, not even Moses or Samuel could intercede for them bc King Manasseh lead Judah to a state of corruption where the people had completely abandoned the Lord. God says the people have 3 options: death by sword, death by famine, or captivity.
We end the reading with Jeremiah struggling bc everyone hates him for speaking God’s Words and he asks the Lord to remember him and to protect him, “For I am called by Your name.” So the Lord assures Jeremiah, “I will deliver you from the hand of the wicked, and I will redeem you from the grip of the terrible.”
More from Jeremiah tomorrow. Keep reading.